Genre: Paranormal/End of the World
Author: Jessica Penot
Publication Date: May 1, 2011
Buy: Amazon :: B&N
Blurb: Cera is a woman who's ordinary in every way. She's an average mother, average wife and is happy living every day mired in the ins and outs of the mundane - until she is murdered.
After her death, Cera find herself lost in a nether land somewhere between life and death where demons, ghosts, and old Gods roam the streets, preying on the living. In this strange world, Cera is told that she is everything but ordinary. She alone can help heal the rift between worlds and help bridge the gap between life and death.
Caught somewhere between her desire to live again and the desire to find heaven, Cera fights those that would pull her into the politics of the netherworld. But the will of the Fates is stronger than Cera's will and Cera quickly finds herself on a quest that will drag her to hell and back while bringing her into the arms of an ancient demon lover. She will find that she's a child of Fate and that she alone can challenge Death himself for dominion over His kingdom.
Please welcome Jessica Penot to the blog for today! I really enjoyed Death's Dream Kingdom. This was a unique story, darker than most that I read and really centered around what "life" there is after death.
Ms. Penot is AMAZING with characterization. They come in both forms, good and evil, and each is compelling and beautiful in their own way. I immediately connected with with our leading lady, Cera, and felt invested in her journey. Cera struggled with her guilt as a mother leaving her children in life and eventually allows herself to let go. This is when she enters Death's dream kingdom, eventually uncovering her life's purpose, which bigger than she could've imagined. I loved not quite knowing where Cera belonged or what choices she would make next. There were definitely some that I didn't quite understand or wasn't on board with at first but eventually, they all made sense. Simply put: fate.
I also really enjoyed hollow-woman, Sin. Sin is one of the first characters to join Cera's path and we are unsure of her purpose. Sin really is neither good nor bad, toeing the line while making eternity-altering decisions. Her attitude cracked me up and I never knew who's side she was on until she finally made her decision in the end.
Also, the bad guy...was a REALLY bad guy. You know from chapter one that Dismis is not quite right. And as the book continues and you develop an understanding for the suffering of these souls and you realize the inhumane and terrible demon he really is. I never doubted my distrust or dislike for him and appreciated the constant in a world where I was constantly uncovering another development.
That being said, although I connected to the characters in our story, figuring out how Death's dream kingdom functioned was rather confusing...however, I suppose this frustration would make sense being that a recently deceased and inexperienced ghost was guiding us through the confusing halls of the Tree of Life and Death.
Overall, Death's Dream Kingdom was a fast-paced, entertainingly dark work with great characters and an intriguing premise.
Now, after ALL of that, please meet the author of Death's Dream Kingdom, Jessica Penot!
Hello Between the Bind readers! I'm a therapist and writer who lives in Alabama with my three corgis, children, husband and other strange creatures. My short stories have been published in numerous literary magazines and anthologies including CSM, Summer Gothic, Bound By Blood, and Outer Darkness. I have ghost story columns in the Valley Planet and White Cat Magazine where I share my love for ghost stories that send shivers down your spine and keep you up at night. I also share y passion for all things ghostly and haunted at my blog, ghost stories and haunted places.
I am currently working on my next Haunted America Book for History Press, Haunted South Alabama.. Follow me at my blog to learn about the ghost stories I am chasing and collection for this fascinating addition to Haunted America. I'm also working on the next book in my Circe series. The demon is awake and waiting for my new heroine in the swamps of Southern Alabma. CLICK HERE to follow my blog! :)
Here is a short excerpt from Death's Dream Kingdom, thank you so much for having me, and I hope you enjoy. :)
Remembering your death is like remembering your birth. What you remember of it is really pieces of what others have told you. They are images pieced together from photographs and others’ memories. Cera remembered her death like an old movie. She remembered the dark sky and soft clouds. She remembered the scent of lavender and green grass.
Cera was happy. She thought she was happy. She knew that she was loved. She had children. She had three beautiful boys who loved her as deeply as she loved them. Long after her death she could still see them in her mind’s eye; their cherubic faces, their little feet. She could smell their breath as they kissed her. When she thought about it, the pain became as tangible as any pain in life. It was as real as the pain of child birth. It was as real as the pain of death.
Cera was running. She always went running in the evenings, after the children went to bed. She loved to run around the park. Cera went out running in the moonlight, listening to the sound of her own tortured breath. She ran over soft grass and cobblestone, counting her miles. She must have been lost in the rhythm of her own motion, because she never saw him coming. She never saw the man that slit her throat as easily as she buttered bread. She didn’t see the delight he took in the motion or the smile on his face when her body fell at his feet. All these things were lost to her.
And finally, Jessica was kind enough to provide you beauties with a free e-copy of Death's Dream Kingdom. Please fill out the rafflecopter below to enter!
*Disclosure of Material Connection: I am a member of Reading Addiction Blog Tours and a copy of this book was provided to me by the author. Although payment may have been received by Reading Addiction Blog Tours, no payment was received by me in exchange for this review. There was no obligation to write a positive review. All opinions expressed are entirely my own and may not necessarily agree with those of the author, publisher, publicist, or readers of this review. This disclosure is in accordance with the Federal Trade Commision’s 16 CFR, Part 255, Guides Concerning Use of Endorcements and Testimonials in Advertising*